Ad-sharing pact links Halmi, Ion

Net will turn over 12 hours a week to RHI starting in July

NEW YORK — Robert Halmi’s RHI Enterprises has agreed to an unusual two-year deal with Ion Media for hundreds of its movies and miniseries: Ion won’t pay cash license fees but will share the ad revenues with RHI.

The deal with Ion, which reaches 92 million households through its owned TV stations and some cable and satellite feeds, is the first contract drawn up by RHI since it ponied up $160 million to buy out its movie library from Crown Media on Oct. 5.

“This deal is a true partnership,” said Brandon Burgess, CEO of Ion Media Networks. Ion will turn over 12 hours a week to RHI beginning July 1. RHI will work with Burgess and his staff on scheduling the right movies for the four hours (7-11 p.m.) Friday, Saturday and Sunday.

The RHI library includes big-budget miniseries like “Lonesome Dove,” “Moby Dick,” “Gulliver’s Travels” and “Merlin.” Among its movies are “A Christmas Carol,” “Prince & the Pauper” and “Don Quixote.”

The deal encompasses not just library product but at least six new TV movies from RHI in their U.S. broadcast premiere.

Burgess said the quid pro quo works because “we’re getting solid movies that appeal to an older-skewing family audience, and Halmi gets access to 92 million homes.”

RHI and Ion will brainstorm on the best ad-sales strategy. Burgess said Halmi is confident that the ad revenues will be more robust than any license fee that Ion, which is low on cash, could have shelled out. “RHI is basically underwriting the advertising performance of the movie,” Burgess said.

Ion has done recent deals with Warner Bros. Domestic and Sony Pictures TV for series and movies. Its Monday-Friday primetime schedule consists of reruns of three oldies: “Charlie’s Angels,” “Mama’s Family” and “Diagnosis Murder.”

Want to read more articles like this one? SUBSCRIBE TO VARIETY TODAY.
Post A Comment 0

Leave a Reply

No Comments

Comments are moderated. They may be edited for clarity and reprinting in whole or in part in Variety publications.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

More Scene News from Variety

Loading